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By all these lovely tokens
September days are here,
With summer’s best of weather
And autumn’s best of cheer.

Helen Hunt Jackson - September
The breezes taste
Of apple peel.
The air is full
Of smells to feel-
Ripe fruit, old footballs,
Burning brush,
New books, erasers,
Chalk, and such.
The bee, his hive,
Well-honeyed hum,
And Mother cuts
Chrysanthemums.
Like plates washed clean
With suds, the days
Are polished with
A morning haze.

John Updike, September
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Most popular languages

mheredgemheredge TeacherHere and therePosts: 26,992 mod
Or maybe I should say, languages spoken by the most people. However if this diagram represented how many people also know English as a second language, obviously it would look quite different.


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Comments

  • icha_15icha_15 Posts: 127 ✭✭
    To be honest when I am looking at this picture I am using phone, so it is not clear enough. But if I may say that English is the most popular language I think. It is because, nowdays it is used as the universal language, so there is no wondering why English to become the most popular language. On the other hand, it is one of our reasons to be here.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 26,992 mod
    Far more people speak Chinese though @icha_15.
  • ElshaimaaElshaimaa Posts: 126 ✭✭✭
    i agree with @icha_15
    @mheredge you right more people speak Chinese but English is the universal language
    it's a common language i use it when i meet anyone i don't understand him
  • Serg_KimSerg_Kim Posts: 12 ✭✭
    Although, English in not the most spoken language, as we can see from the chart – it is the most learned language. And it make sense, since it is the language on which the most of the new information is published, the language of new technologies and of international communication. In the global information production, English language is the absolute leader – i.e. most of the new books, films, magazines, academic books and of course web sites are in English. Actually, nowadays you have a choice – you either know English or you become separated from the huge part of information that is available.
  • PaulettePaulette Posts: 6,032 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Are the Dutch speaking people a forgotten race on the world of languages?
    But I think that the people who speak Dutch are very flexible because a lot of them speak many languages. So I think about myselves, a Belgium lady who understand very good, and also speak, a bit less, English, French and German. I did not yet come to learn Chinese.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 26,992 mod
    The Dutch are maybe the champions when it comes to being good at languages @Pauline. I suppose they must exist, but are there any Dutch people who can't speak English?????
  • PaulettePaulette Posts: 6,032 ✭✭✭✭✭
    @mheredge I don't know all the Dutch people but I agree with you the majority of the Dutch people speaks English because the English language in Belgium is a third language at every secundary school from the second class, and I think in the Netherlands a second language. When I was at secundary school then were the languages Dutch, French and German. I learned English by myselves when I was working at the school as a teacher because we participated in exchange programs in various European countries and the chosen language was English.
  • GemmaRowlandsGemmaRowlands Moderator Posts: 5,307 mod
    This is interesting, thank you. I also think it would be good to see the total overall speakers, rather than just as a first language. Lots of people like to learn English as a second language!
  • YellowtailYellowtail Posts: 720 ✭✭✭
    As the note on the upper-left says, the diagram represents only the 23 most spoken language for 4.1 billion people. Like Dutch, there are many other minority languages spoken by rest of the world. You can also see Hindi is spoken by only 26 million people, while India has the population of 1.3 billion. According to this article, there are 780 languages spoken in India, and more than half of it are at the risk of disappearing in 50 years.
    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-india-languages-idUSKBN1AJ1CA
  • Serg_KimSerg_Kim Posts: 12 ✭✭
    Excuse me, could you explain please. I tried Google translator, but there are several translations available. When you are saying "the Dutch" - do you mean German speaking people or people from the Netherlands?
  • PaulettePaulette Posts: 6,032 ✭✭✭✭✭
    @Serg_Kim I mean the people who speaks Dutch and they live in the Netherlands and also in Belgium. German people speak German.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 26,992 mod
    @GemmaRowlands the chart is supposedly showing languages that are mother-tongue. So this means that the largest group of mother-tongue speakers are Chinese which would be Mandarin Chinese, as I think Cantonese as spoken by people in Hong Kong and the eastern areas in China are not as numerous as the Mandarin speakers.

    It's the same problem in Nepal. It's a tiny country with just 30 million inhabitants but about 100 languages and over 60 different ethnic groups. Every year another language becomes extinct.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 26,992 mod
    This diagram attempts to show how languages are related to each other.




    But this article suggest that there's not much interest in British schools for learning another language.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/aug/25/languages-exams-test-league-tables-schools-fall-pupils
  • icha_15icha_15 Posts: 127 ✭✭
    @mheredge you mentioned that Chinese is the famous language? Is it because the population of Chinese is the biggest, so it makes they language more popular or the famous one. I think it has correlation.

    Regardless that English not the famous one, but a lot of people in the world learn about this language.
  • nontannontan Posts: 69 ✭✭
    English is virtually the world common language.
    This is why I study English.

    I sometimes think that we human being should create a half artificial language based on English (as Zamenhof created Esperanto based on Latin) as the world standard language, making its grammar and pronunciation very easy so that anyone can master it quickly.
    I am not entirely serious about it, but if it really occurs it will be much easier to communicate with people all around the world.
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 487 ✭✭✭
    edited August 30
    > @nontan said:
    > English is virtually the world common language.

    > This is why I study English.

    >

    > I am not entirely serious about it, but if it really occurs it will be much easier to communicate with people all around the world.

    We already have Esperanto, and it hasn't been very successful so far. I guess the reason is that an artificial language have zero speakers at the starting point. I don't see why the motivation to learn may be strong enough either.

    The Latin roots of Esperanto probably make learning it easier for people with the Western European heritage, but it's unlikely so for others.

    I think that learning English is easier than learning any other European language. The grammar is rather simple: no genders, two grammatical cases only, rigid syntax. The declension and conjugation are basic too.

    Monetising English expertise is also not a big deal. To conclude, English is most learned due to very obvious reasons.
  • moesdimoesdi Posts: 3
    As I saw that English give me new horizons, I think that I miss even more as I do not speak Russian, French, Chinese, Japanese, etc.
    But, thank God the technology will give a powerful solution to really communicate, like this new device that you put in your ear and translate in real time. This is a very good thing!
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 487 ✭✭✭
    > @moesdi said:
    > But, thank God the technology will give a powerful solution to really communicate, like this new device that you put in your ear and translate in real time. This is a very good thing!

    Machines aren't so clever yet.

    In China there is a restaurant called “Translate server error”. The owner attempted to translate the Chinese word for restaurant into English but the machine translation produced an error. Not knowing the difference, the restaurant printed the error out in English and used it for their sign.
    http://lingualinx.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/18012010021235.jpg

    Or more
    http://www.boredpanda.com/funny-chinese-translation-fails/
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 26,992 mod
    Some of these are hilarious @Practical_Severard. I wonder whether sometimes it is done on purpose.
  • nontannontan Posts: 69 ✭✭
    > @Practical_Severard said:

    > I think that learning English is easier than learning any other European language. The grammar is rather simple: no genders, two grammatical cases only, rigid syntax. The declension and conjugation are basic too.
    >

    It may be, but it is still difficult for me.
    Many of us gave up learning English.
    I myself have given it up several times.
    Anyway, it is just my fantastic idea.
    I don't really wish it occurs.
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 487 ✭✭✭
    I haven't had such a good laugh for a very long time, @mheredge.
    It's a real gem, Though, some photos may be photoshopped, I agree.
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 487 ✭✭✭
    edited August 31
    > @nontan said:
    > It may be, but it is still difficult for me.
    > Many of us gave up learning English.
    > I myself have given it up several times.
    > Anyway, it is just my fantastic idea.
    > I don't really wish it occurs.

    It's a matter of motivation. If English is absolutely neccessary to enter a university, to get a better job or improve one's life otherwise then people normally succeed.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 26,992 mod
    English is much easier than many of the Latin languages @nontan. Not that this is any consolation when grappling with the weird and wonderful complexities of English grammar!
  • nontannontan Posts: 69 ✭✭
    @mheredge
    Another thing I think is difficult about English is its pronunciation.
    Japanese language has less sounds (both vowel and consonant) than English.
    You might have heard that the Japanese can't hear and pronounce the difference between 'R' and 'L'.
    And there are some more sounds that English has and Japanese has not.
    English we speak is often called 'Engrish' sarcastically. (´;ω;`)
  • GemmaRowlandsGemmaRowlands Moderator Posts: 5,307 mod
    Serg_Kim said:

    Excuse me, could you explain please. I tried Google translator, but there are several translations available. When you are saying "the Dutch" - do you mean German speaking people or people from the Netherlands?

    Dutch can refer to people of Germany or the Netherlands, but different people use the word in different ways - so there's no way of saying for sure what they mean. I know that probably doesn't help much!
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 487 ✭✭✭
    edited August 31
    > @Serg_Kim said:
    > When you are saying "the Dutch" - do you mean German speaking people or people from the Netherlands?

    Dutch 2
    noun
    2. as plural noun "the Dutch" The people of the Netherlands collectively.

    https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/dutch
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 487 ✭✭✭
    edited September 1
    Speaking Engrish @nontan is way better than speaking no foreign language at all. "Is the glass half empty or half full?"

    Students with different ethnic backgrounds have their own difficulties in learning English. The pronounciation is maybe the toughest thing for the Japanese, the articles for the Slavic people, the Spanish or others have their own obstacles. Whatever your ethnic background is, you'll have a fair share of easy topics as well as of obstacles.
  • nontannontan Posts: 69 ✭✭
    @Practical_Severard
    Thank you for encouraging me!
    Don't worry about me. ( ´◡` )
    I am not giving up.
    I am enjoying learning English.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 26,992 mod
    I can't roll my 'r's which is a bit of a problem with French, Italian and Nepali, though maybe less of a problem with Spanish. I prefer the pronunciation of Latin American Spanish to Spanish-Spanish. Colombian Spanish is the finest
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